What is the name of your state?What is the name of your state? NJ and I have been reading all night, so now I am posting. Here is the dilemma:
I lived with my boyfriend for the last 3 years. His wife left him 6 years ago, 3 years before I even came into the picture, and immediately moved in with her boyfriend. He never filed for divorce, because he did not want to share his pension with her,no move out of the marital home, which she got, lock stock and barrel. They had no relationship to speak of over those 6 years, except when she might call the house about one of the children, who are all in their 20's. He never changed the beneficiary on his two life insurance policies, one of which is associated with a Police Pension. In February of 2004, he found out he was ill with Cirrhosis of the Liver. I cared for him through all the hospitalizations and home care. In July of 2004, he changed the primary beneficiaries on both policies to my name, which I was never aware of until after his death, and his brother told me. He made his son secondary. He died October 3, 2004, and she suddenly became the bereaved widow. I filed death claims on both of these policies, and found out she is contesting both of them, trying to say he was incompetent when he made the changes. He was no where near incompetent, and managed all his own affairs, wrote checks, drove, etc. Do you need to be legally declared incompetent in this case?
My attorney is asking for $1,000 retainer, which I can ill afford, since I never worked since moving in with my boyfriend, and was counting on the insurance money to move on. He wants to file a suit against the estate, based on Palimony Laws, or some such, as leverage for the life insurance. I have no desire to sue for part of the house. The total of both policies is $85K, far less that the house and property are worth in Ocean County. My dilemma is, do you think I need to go as far as a lawsuit with this, and what do you think my chances are of winning without an attorney? Would I be better off spending the $1,000? I'm just worried that the $1,00 will turn into some enormous amount before this over. The insurance company is talking about "interpleader action" on the decision. I have no idea what that means. If someone can explain it, that would help immensely. The policy associated with the pension says thay hope to have a decision by December 16, 2004.
No one from the Prudential has contacted me except by form letters.
I am also awaiting the results of a SSDI hearing, so am forbidden to even try to work at this time. I have resorted to public assistance and would appreciate any input you may have for me. For some reason, my gut is telling me that this is going to end in my favor, but maybe I should be more worried about it than I am?
Thank you so much for any information.